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Plane Crash in Iran; McMaster: Russia Meddling "Incontrovertible"; Students and Supporters Demand Gun Law Reform; Australian Police Investigate Carnival Cruise Brawls; PyeongChang Olympics; Stars to Wear Black at BAFTAs. Aired 4-5a ET

Aired February 18, 2018 - 04:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


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UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): This is CNN breaking news.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Hello to our viewers here in the U.S. and around the world, I'm Natalie Allen.

Breaking news out of Iran to begin with. A passenger plane carrying 66 people has reportedly crashed. It was flying from the capital, Tehran, to Yasuj, an area to the south. Let's get more from CNN senior international correspondent Sam Kiley, who's in Abu Dhabi for us.

Sam, what more do we know about the area the plane went down other than it appears the weather was not good?

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Not good to say the least. A rescue mission launched by the Iranian authorities, a helicopter was forced back in an attempt to get to the location where these 66 passengers on board this twin turboprop aircraft that crashed not very far from its final destination.

But they crashed in an area known as the -- well, not known as, called the Dina Mountain, which itself is a vast range, really, more than 40 peaks of over 4,000 meters. That's well in excess of 12,000 feet, a lot of them snow covered.

This being winter, of course, in continental climate, can be some very severe conditions. And clearly that was what prevailed when the first attempt to get a rescue team into this location was forced back, the Iranian authorities say.

Now they will no doubt be trying again. The aircraft took off at 7:55 local time. So the day is still yet young. There is still several hours of daylight when it may be possible to get to this location. There's no official confirmation as to whether all or any of those people have survived.

But the assumption is, given the location and the very harsh conditions, that any hope of survivors would be pretty slim. The aircraft was manufactured in Europe. It is -- there is no

suggestion yet at all of foul play. But Iran has, of course, been battling against international sanctions imposed on it over its nuclear weapons program.

Those sanctions, of course, have been eased relatively recently. But nonetheless, a lot of their aircraft have been having to be maintained by buying spare parts, for example, on the black market up until relatively recently.

Again, no suggestion that this was a mechanical failure. This is a mountainous area, prone to storms, very high altitude and not an easy environment to fly in, at the best of times. But for the time being, bad weather has forced back any rescue effort attempts.

ALLEN: Sam, has there been any information regarding any final communication with the pilot before this plane disappeared?

KILEY: Not so far. There is an indication, there are some reports that it disappeared from radar after around 50 minutes, which would dovetail more or less with its flight plan, heading as it was to Yasuj, and coming down or at least disappearing from flight radar after about 50 minutes, would place it over that very high mountain range.

But there is not, at the moment, as far as we understand, any last- minute communication that has come from that aircraft. And, of course, the speculation there being, if there was last-minute communication, perhaps the aircraft was experiencing some difficulties. But at the moment we have no official confirmation of that.

ALLEN: Reiterating they have not found the wreckage due to bad weather. They can't get to that area. Sam, we know you'll be covering it for us and bringing us any more information. Sam Kiley for us, thank you.

Other news we're following. One day after 13 Russian operatives were charged with meddling in the U.S. presidential election and just three days after 17 students and faculty were slaughtered in cold blood by a young man with an assault rifle in Florida, U.S. President Donald Trump inexplicably linked the two.

In fact, he suggested the Russia investigation may have been to blame for the FBI failing to follow up on a tip about the Florida shooter.

Late Saturday, the president tweeted this, "Very sad that the FBI missed all of the many signals sent out by the Florida school shooter. This is not acceptable. They are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign. There is no collusion."

The president has yet to even acknowledge the Russian meddling, putting him at odds with his national security adviser. Listen to what H.R. McMaster said at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LT. GEN. H.R. MCMASTER, NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR: As you can see with the FBI indictment --

[04:05:00]

MCMASTER: -- the evidence is now really incontrovertible and available in the public domain.

Now that this is in the arena of a law enforcement investigation it's going to be very apparent to everyone. But the second reason where I think Russia may re-evaluate what it's been doing is because it's just not working.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: Again, that's the national security adviser.

But Mr. McMaster's candor prompted this sharp rebuke from the president in a tweet.

"General McMaster," he tweeted, "forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians and that the only collusion was between Russia and Crooked H., the DNC and the Dems."

All of those claims by President Trump are unsubstantiated.

Our Frederik Pleitgen joins us now from Moscow following the story from there.

Fred, let's start with Mr. Trump's assertion that this indictment proves there was no collusion with the Trump campaign.

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I mean it certainly, on the face of it, doesn't prove that there was any collusion. And certainly the indictment also doesn't say that any Americans were a part of this or that any of the things that the Russians did had any sort of influence on the outcome of the election.

However, what it does show -- and we've also been investigating some of these matters for awhile as well -- is that the scheme that was going on, as far as propaganda was concerned, as far as social media campaign by Russian companies was concerned, those do appear to have been a lot more elaborate than most people would have thought.

Now the indictment that came forward revolves around a company called the Internet Research Agency, which many people simply call the troll factory. And it's part of a big business empire that's run by an oligarch called Yevgeny Prigozhin. He is someone who has risen in the favor of the Kremlin and the favor of Vladimir Putin after all of this took place but also as this was taking place as well.

And if you look at some of the things that this Internet Research Agency did, it is quite remarkable. It goes far beyond social media campaigns. They have people who traveled to the U.S., they had people who assumed false identities.

They had people who infiltrated payment systems like PayPal to try and get money to folks in the United States. They organized activity and rallies in the U.S. that then U.S. citizens went to. So it is quite a big scheme that was going on there.

And one of the things that I think was very interesting to read in this indictment was it seems this Internet Research Agency did it own research so well they did this in a targeted way.

They managed to target purple states, swing states that were on the fringe of either going for Hillary Clinton or for now President Trump and they managed to target those very successfully.

So it is unclear whether or not this really had any effect on the outcome of the election but it certainly -- and this is what the indictment says -- was targeted towards trying to help the Trump campaign and hurt the Clinton campaign -- Natalie.

ALLEN: All right. We thank you. Frederik Pleitgen in Moscow for us. We'll talk a little more later this hour, Fred, thanks.

Let's talk about the indictment with Peter Matthews, a political analyst and professor of political science at Cypress College.

Thanks so much for joining us, Peter.

PETER MATTHEWS, CYPRESS COLLEGE: Good to be here.

ALLEN: Well, Republican senator Lindsey Graham has said, Mr. Trump, the president, has a blind spot when it comes to Russia.

Why does it seem like the president is incapable of saying anything negative about Russia or condemning Russia, when he easily attacked our allies, like the U.K., for example?

MATTHEWS: It seems very strange from those of us looking from the outside objectively. And we're really wondering, maybe he had an inclination toward working things out with Russia when he came into office.

But also we know that he's had investments. He's had private loans given to him for his businesses from Russian entities. And I'm not sure if that has anything to do with it but we have to look at that. He's very loath to criticize Mr. Putin or Russia policies, many times, maybe he has an inclination to want to work things out and reset the button.

On the other hand maybe there's personal interests there involved. And that's very problematic, very concerning if that's the case.

ALLEN: Is there anything Congress can do to force President Trump's hand, vis-a-vis sanctions against Russia?

MATTHEWS: Well, he's the executive branch leader. So he's got to implement what Congress actually has passed. If he refuses to do so, the only thing ultimately they could do to get

him to do more of what they need him to do and what we need him to do is to impeach him and then eventually remove him if the Senate agrees to remove him after the House impeaches him.

There's very little other recourse that the Congress has. He is the executive branch, the chief administrator, chief bureaucrat, chief executive to carry out the policies. If he doesn't want to do them or he wants to do them half-heartedly or turn them in a different direction, presidents often do that, actually.

ALLEN: Let's talk about the other topic that is dominating the news this week, the mass shooting at the high school in Parkland, Florida.

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ALLEN: President Trump visited victims and first responders following the massacre and today he spoke with the Parkland mayor.

He also tweeted this, "Very sad that the FBI missed all of the many signals sent out by the Florida school shooter. This is not acceptable. They are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign. There is no collusion. Get back to the basics and make us all proud."

MATTHEWS: I knew he was trying to connect the two. I knew he would try to connect the two. And it's just despicable in my view that he would do that. Instead he should stop underfunding the FBI.

He should bring in more funds, rather than giving tax cuts to the superrich like he did in this plan that was just passed by him and the Congress and bring the funds in to hire more law enforcement, more FBI agents, more school safety measures, like having checks, you know, real safety checks with metal detectors in schools, as well as background checks and stopping those with a mental illness from owning or from having these guns.

In fact, he reversed an Obama era ruling just a year ago, when President Obama made it more difficult for those with mental illness to be able to purchase a gun. Trump rescinded that executive order, just the opposite of what he's talking the other direction.

So I think that was just very wrong for him to bring in the FBI and blame them for what happened there in that (INAUDIBLE) although they were -- the FBI was informed that this particular shooter had put something on Facebook, saying that he would want to become the next professional school shooter.

And so the FBI, you would think, would respond. But then again they may be understaffed and not enough of them to do that, as many cases with law enforcement today.

ALLEN: Right. They did admit a mistake in not following up on that.

The president has not mentioned guns in all of this. And many lawmakers haven't either. Vigils were held this weekend, though, with students calling out lawmakers over gun laws in the United States. Let's listen.

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EMMA GONZALEZ, STUDENT: If you don't do anything to prevent this from coming, from continuing to occur, that number of gunshot victims will go up and the number that they are worth will go down. And we will be worthless to you.

To every politician who is taking donations from the NRA, shame on you. We know that they're claiming that there are mental health issues and I am not a psychologist but we need to pay attention to the fact that this isn't just a mental health issue. He wouldn't have harmed that many students with a knife.

DELANEY TARR (PH), STUDENT: I'm a high school senior, who, three days ago, was worried about which of my friends were going to receive flowers for Valentine's Day. I was focused on what I was going to be wearing to prom one week ago. My main concerns were my grades, college acceptance and my social life.

Now I'm a high school senior who is worried about which memorials I need to place flowers at. Now I'm focused on what clothes I can wear so that I can run away from gunfire. My main concerns are funerals, gun control and whether or not I'm going to be shot wherever I go. My innocence, our innocence, has been taken from us.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: These students are brave, they're outspoken and they're going directly to lawmakers.

Could this be the massacre that's a tipping point?

MATTHEWS: It certainly could, because especially if you have students who are so aware now. It's just heartbreaking to hear them and also encouraging to hear them come out with a real solutions, that it is gun control.

We know statistically that where the states that have a high rate of gun ownership, there are far more gun related deaths. States with a lower rate of gun ownership there's lower gun related deaths as are true of nations across the world. So we have to have much stricter gun relations. Students are championing this now.

And when students speak up, Natalie, things can really happen. And I'm very encouraged by these young women and (INAUDIBLE) young student, women's and also men, for speaking out and saying we need our politicians to respond to us. We will never make the next generation if you let this happen and continuously happen.

Don't forget it's also making them very nervous, very stressed out.

How can they focus on their studies?

This has so many ramifications, these school shootings keeping going as they've been outrageously going, 17 of them this year alone, so far.

ALLEN: Right. And churches and concerts, it's an epidemic in this country. We'll wait and see and see if these students can make a difference to try to make this country safer. Professor Peter Matthews, thank you. We appreciate it.

MATTHEWS: Thank you.

ALLEN: And coming up here we'll have more from those students demanding action from lawmakers.

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GONZALES: Politicians who sit in their gilded houses and Senate seats funded by the NRA telling us nothing could have ever been done to prevent this, we call B.S.

ALLEN (voice-over): We will talk to that young lady right there about why she is speaking out.

Then a friend of the confessed Florida shooter is talking with CNN. He says the suspect talked about school shootings -- a lot. But he thought he was joking. And now he's wondering what he --

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ALLEN (voice-over): -- could have done differently.

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ALLEN: And welcome back.

Mourning has turned into outrage after that deadly mass shooting in the state of Florida; 17 people were killed by a gunman at a Parkland high school Wednesday.

Young students and teachers, now survivors, are demanding tougher gun laws. They held this rally alongside supporters Saturday, many condemning the National Rifle Association and lawmakers who take donations from it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GONZALES: The people in the government who are voted into power are lying to us. And us kids seem to be the only ones who notice and our parents should call B.S.

Companies trying to make caricatures of the teenagers nowadays, saying that all we are is self-involved and trend-obsessed and they hush us into submission when our message doesn't reach the ears of the nation, we are prepared to call B.S.

Politicians --

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GONZALES: -- Politicians who sit in their gilded houses and Senate seats funded by the NRA telling us nothing could have ever been done to prevent this, we call B.S.

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GONZALES: We say that -- they say that --

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GONZALES: -- tougher gun laws do not decrease gun violence. We call B.S.

(APPLAUSE)

GONZALES: They say a good guy with a gun stops a bad guy with a gun. We call B.S. They say guns are just tools like knives and are as dangerous as cars. We call B.S.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: The student speaking there, Emma Gonzalez. And she spoke with CNN's Martin Savidge about the inspiration behind her impassioned speech.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GONZALES: I have been thinking of that stuff nonstop ever since before the election, all the news about the election coming forward and all of the information coming forward about the current president. And I went off because I was given the opportunity to go off. And I wasn't afraid to talk about this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: No, she was not.

Many within that high school community remain in shock after what happened. Memorials to the victims have been held. And the principal of the school, Ty Thompson, posted this emotional message on Saturday.

TY THOMPSON, PRINCIPAL, STONEMAN DOUGLAS HIGH SCHOOL: Eagles, I promise you, I will hug each and every one of you, as many times as you need and I will hold you as long as you need me to, for all 3,300 of you and your families. And we will get through this together.

Our community is strong, our students are strong, we will persevere in these trying times.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: Ty Thompson, there, the principal of Parkland's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. He also thanked emergency responders and the efforts of staff and students to save lives.

One airline says it will give free flights to the families of victims trying to reach Parkland, Florida. JetBlue says it is deeply saddened by the shootings and that many of its employees live and work near the city. The company says volunteers are ready to help families with air travel and it will help provide ground transportation with Lyft.

More details are coming out about the confessed gunman. Nikolas Cruz is due back in court Monday. Defense attorneys say he will plead guilty if he can avoid the death penalty. As of now, prosecutors are not ruling that out.

Former classmates say Cruz talked about shooting up the school. Somebody even called the FBI last month, warning Cruz owned guns and wanted to kill. The bureau never followed up.

Cruz's mother also repeatedly called police because of his violent outbursts. CNN talked with a neighbor, who saw Cruz after his mother died a few months ago.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PAUL GOLD, CRUZ'S NEIGHBOR: He was emotionless. And I wasn't sure if it was shock or what was going on but he had no emotion to him. He was just -- and then I asked him, are you sad?

You know. Can I help you?

And he said I'm sad because nobody showed up.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: One of Cruz's former teachers also told CNN he cursed at her during exams and was suspended.

Some people who knew Nikolas Cruz are asking themselves if there was anything they could have done to stop what happened. CNN's Gary Tuchman talked with a friend of the shooter.

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GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The Florida gunman was said to be a loner but we talked to a 20-year-old man who says he was a friend of his, part of a group of four people who hung out together at the same alternative school.

What Allan Varela told us is both depressing and unsettling.

A lot of people we talked to say that the shooter had no friends. But you were his friend.

ALLAN VARELA, NIKOLAS CRUZ'S FRIEND: Correct. We went fishing. We hung out at malls and stuff. And we were all walking. We would just walk to parks and just talk and walk around and laugh.

TUCHMAN: What kind of stuff did you talk about? VARELA: We talked about our daily lives and what we liked and make

jokes and stuff, just like any other regular teenager.

TUCHMAN: You told me he was different than your other friends, that his behavior was different. What would he talk about that made you realize he was different than your other friends?

VARELA: His humor. His humor was kind of crude. It was kind of dark. And the way he just presented himself, he would talk about ISIS and guns and stuff.

TUCHMAN: Did that concern you when you heard him talking about things like that?

VARELA: A little bit, yes. But at the time, no. Because he was smiling. He was cool. And we all presumed they were just jokes. But I guess within those groups there is something lying inside of him. Again, his crude humor, he would joke around like school shootings and stuff.

TUCHMAN: What would he say about school shootings?

VARELA: He would --

[04:25:00]

VARELA: -- joke because we would be looking at photos. And he would joke about the photos and stuff. I really want to be there for him. I really did. I wish -- I felt like I could have stopped it. And I know it wasn't my fault, but I felt like I could have stopped him. I could have been there for him. Seventeen people wouldn't have lost their lives.

TUCHMAN: If you would have stayed in touch with him.

VARELA: Yes.

TUCHMAN: Because it had been a few months since you talked him. Obviously, it's not your fault or your responsibility. But you feel deep in your heart you could have done something.

VARELA: Yes.

TUCHMAN: Allan Varela tells us he wishes he would have turned back the block and said he is heartsick for the family members of all the victims -- Gary Tuchman, CNN, Parkland, Florida.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ALLEN: So many young people trying to make sense of that.

Coming up, more on our breaking news. A passenger plane has crashed after taking off from Tehran. More details in a moment. Stay with us.

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ALLEN: Welcome back to our viewers here in the U.S. and around the world. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Atlanta and I'm Natalie Allen. Here are our top stories.

An Iranian passenger plane carrying 66 people has reportedly crashed in Central Iran. It was flying from the capital, Tehran, to Yasuj, an area to the south. Iran's state-run news agency says the plane disappeared from radar soon after taking off.

Rescue workers and helicopters are trying to find any wreckage but difficult weather conditions right now are making the search challenging. In a few minutes we'll talk with our meteorologist Ivan --

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ALLEN: -- Cabrera about more on the conditions they're dealing with.

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ALLEN: So back now to our breaking news. That plane carrying 66 people has reportedly crashed in Central Iran in an area known for its difficult terrain and weather.

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ALLEN: We turn now to Russia and what appears to be an absolute stonewall by the Kremlin on the reported deaths of dozens of Russian contractors in U.S. airstrikes recently in Syria. CNN's Fred Pleitgen is following this for us and he joins us now from Moscow with more about it -- Fred.

PLEITGEN: Hi, Natalie. We've found some interesting links and some new information, also, about those deaths that happened in Syria.

First of all, apparently, a lot more Russians were killed in that counterattack by the U.S. Air Force, which happened on February 7th.

But the other interesting thing that we found out is that the man who's at the center of this new indictment by the special counsel, Robert Mueller, Yevgeny Prigozhin, apparently is also linked to that attack and to some of the Russian contractors who were fighting on the ground in Syria and attacked those American forces as well.

Let's have a look.

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PLEITGEN (voice-over): Images you won't find on Russian state media, a grieving mother, her son, Ruslan Gavrilov, killed in Syria, working for a private security company during an ill-fated attack on American- backed forces. Online network Current Time visited her at her home. FAINA GAVRILOVA, MOTHER OF KILLED CONTRACTOR (through translator): Are they not people?

They obviously went to fight to help, even if it's for the money, it's because of poverty, it's because there are no jobs.

PLEITGEN: CNN has identified several of the Russians killed on the night of February 7th. They were employed by a Russian security company called Wagner and were part of a force trying to take a gas field held by U.S. backed fighters and American troops in Eastern Syria.

U.S. warplanes, helicopters, and artillery killed more than 100 of the attackers before the rest fled.

Sources we've been speaking to, say many Russians, probably a dozen were either killed or badly wounded. One source who visited a military hospitals, says many of the Wagner contractors who survived had what he called horrendous wounds, and he called all of it a massacre.

[04:35:00]

PLEITGEN: But just why the attack took place at all comes down to oil and money.

According to the U.S. Treasury, Wagner is led by Dmitry Utkin, seen here meeting President Vladimir Putin. Utkin is under U.S. sanctions because of Wagner's activities in Ukraine. He has a long association with the Russian Oligarch called Yevgeny Prigozhin, which close to the Kremlin.

U.S. investigators believe, Prigozhin's corporation also financed the so- called troll factory that was involved in meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Another of Prigozhin's many companies is called Evro Polis. It has an office in Damascus and a deal with the Assad regime.

According to a contract, examined by CNN, Evro Polis gets a quarter of revenues from oil and gas fields that are recaptured on behalf of the Syrian government. Wagner does the fighting, Evro Polis, it's the oil.

Ruslan Leviev, an activist whose group monitors the Russian role in Syria, says the Prigozhin's empire is extensive.

RUSLAN LEVIEV, CONFLICT INTELLIGENCE TEAM (through translator): The group of companies controlled by Prigozhin, includes many known to U.S. structures. One of the most famous projects is the troll factory that specialized in propaganda and informational war.

It's the Wagner private military company which was initially formed by his personal security guards. Dmitry Utkin, the head of Wagner group used to work in Yevgeny Prigozhin's security service.

PLEITGEN: Last year, Prigozhin denied being linked to Wagner, his company saying, quote, "We do not have any information about this organization." CNN's efforts to reach Prigozhin and Wagner were unsuccessful. For its part, the Russian government is also reluctant to talk about last week's incident, which is of no comfort to the families of these and other men killed in the Syrian desert.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

PLEITGEN: It still is totally unclear how many Russians were actually killed there in the Syrian desert. Certainly we can see on social media more and more families coming forward and demanding answers.

But it seems as though, Natalie, at this time and what we've heard from the Russian government is they don't want to talk about this issue and, for them, they hope that it goes away -- Natalie.

ALLEN: Well, with the power of social media, it probably won't. OK, Fred Pleitgen for us there in Moscow, thanks so much, Fred.

Coming up here, how a cruise through the South Pacific turned into a nightmare for thousands of passengers trapped on board.

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ALLEN: Australian police are investigating how a 10-day cruise in the South Pacific turned into a vacation in hell for thousands of people. They're looking into violent brawls among groups of passengers that broke out on board.

Ultimately, 23 passengers were removed. Now with the cruise finished, passengers are describing their fear and frustration. Paul Dowsley of Australia's Seven News Network has more about it.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PAUL DOWSLEY, SEVEN NETWORK, AUSTRALIA: The Carnival Legend's arrival into station pier was picture perfect. But sadly, for some passengers, their holiday was far from perfect after vicious brawls broke out over several days.

Nine guests were forced off the ship near Eden.

CINDY BUGLISI, PASSENGER: Horrifying, like people screaming, running around, throwing glasses, everything, like -- nightmare.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Blood everywhere, people with faces, their faces getting smashed in.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, there were full-on attacks.

DOWSLEY (voice-over): Some blamed one group of 23 people, who were traveling together.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scumbags. They would just run the decks, just looking to pick on like anybody they could find.

DOWSLEY (voice-over): Others blamed the ship's security guards.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They put handcuffs around their hands, used them as knuckle busters and punching women, 16-year-old kids, everything.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They were on the ground in handcuffs, begging for them to stop and then the security just kept punching them.

DOWSLEY (voice-over): Some of the ejected passengers arrived at Melbourne airport last night. One family member told Seven News they're meeting with a lawyer on Monday to discuss their next move.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The security had no choice at the end but to grab them and rough them up as they did.

DOWSLEY: A 10-day cruise like this, through the South Pacific, should just have brought happy memories for the 2,100 passengers but this troubled trip was so spoiled, that some are demanding refunds.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, what a wasted day that was.

DOWSLEY (voice-over): -- Paul Dowsley, Seven News.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ALLEN: The Carnival Cruise Line issued a response saying, "If we have" -- excuse me -- "We have a zero tolerance approach to excessive behavior that affects other guests. In line with this policy, we cooperated fully with local authorities in Australia to remove a large family group who had been involved in disruptive acts aboard Carnival Legend."

Well, many people in Chile were suspicious when two Americans, many years ago, both former CEOs of wealthy outdoor apparel brands, began buying huge tracts of land there. But they are suspicious no more. That has turned into the largest private land donation ever made to a country.

And now, Chile has a new national park that's roughly the size of Switzerland all dedicated to conservation.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ALLEN (voice-over): From snow-capped peaks, to sweeping grasslands, these dramatic swaths of Chile's wild terrain are now one of conservation's biggest success stories.

KRIS TOMPKINS, PRESIDENT, TOMPKINS CONSERVATION: Right now, I'm looking at the northern ice cap of Chile that falls down into the Baker River, which is the largest river in Chile. And then I'm looking out toward the 764,000 acres of this new national park. It's a great feeling. ALLEN (voice-over): In late January, Kristine Tompkins signed over more than 400,000 hectares to the Chilean government in what's believed to be the largest private land donation to a country in history.

Chile added more than 3 million hectares to that, forming a newly designated parkland that's roughly the size of Switzerland, open to the public to explore. The handover comes after more than 20 years of planning by Kristine and her late husband, Doug, slowly acquiring large chunks of Chile's wildlands.

TOMPKINS: Some of it's just opportunistic, looking for areas that are biologically important and areas that were for sale. And little by little, we just began to patch what became several new national parks together.

ALLEN (voice-over): The U.S. nationals were an unusual mix of powerful magnates and passionate conservationists. He was an avid outdoorsman, the founder of apparel behemoths North Face and Esprit; she the chief executive of outdoor clothing brand Patagonia.

TOMPKINS: There was a lot of skepticism about it because we are two foreigners buying up large tracts of land --

[04:45:00]

TOMPKINS: -- and saying it was for conservation and eventually to create a national park. But we just felt like if we keep going and do those things we said we were going to do that eventually the skepticism and the negativity would pass to the side.

ALLEN (voice-over): Despite resistance to what some viewed as an infringement on local businesses, the Tompkins' plan came to fruition last month. Sadly, Doug Tompkins could not be there to witness it. He died in a kayaking accident in his beloved Chile in 2015.

TOMPKINS: I think, in some ways, this big, audacious vision of Doug's to create these new national parks was the thing that probably kept me in one piece when he died so suddenly. He left us with so much.

ALLEN (voice-over): In carrying out her husband's legacy, Kristine hopes the world will recognize the importance of protecting this vast, wild place for years to come.

TOMPKINS: You have to look at these things in terms of 100 or 200 years and not as necessarily where are they headed in the short-term but what do they look like 100 years from now?

How will they affect and promote human and nonhuman health?

That's where the questions really lie.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ALLEN: Beautiful terrain, isn't it?

Chile hopes the additional park will continue to bring in tourists, who enjoy this unspoiled wilderness.

Coming up here, the BAFTA awards are Sunday night and stars on the red carpet hope to make a wardrobe statement against sexual harassment as we hear from BAFTA's CEO.

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AMANDA BERRY, CEO, BAFTA: If you look at the wearing black at the Golden Globes, that went from being a rumor, it might happen, to happening in just a matter of weeks.

And I think what is fantastic about what is happening now is people are absolutely determined that they're going to stamp out against harassment and bullying and, should it happen, that they're going to support people to ensure that it can't happen again.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

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[04:50:00]

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ALLEN: Day nine at the Winter Games in South Korea and all eyes were on Austrian skier Marcel Hirscher as he secured his second gold. He had not won an Olympic gold before and now he had one in the men's giant slalom and one in the alpine combined.

And Hirscher isn't done. He will be competing in his favorite event, the slalom, on Thursday.

And former gold medalist Lindsey Vonn of the United States is dealing with trolls on social media after not medaling in the women's SuperG race on Saturday. Leave the girl alone. But she can still go for gold in the downhill race next week.

Here's a quick look at the medal count table. Norway has climbed to the top of the medal chart. They lead the pack with nine golds, 25 total medals for them. CNN's Paula Hancocks sat down with the Norwegian prime minister in South Korea to discuss sports diplomacy at these games.

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PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: How do you see the North Korean engagement in this Olympics?

NORWEGIAN PRIME MINISTER: Well, six months ago there was tension, people were saying I'm not sure we want to go to the Olympics, because they were afraid of something happening.

So for the Olympics, for the situation now, it's good that that tension is lower, that there are a joint Korean team, that there are sharing from North Korea, sharing group coming here.

And all of that is nice. I just think it's important to understand that if North Korea gets nuclear capacity, if they get a program of missiles, that they can reach anywhere around the world.

This is not only an issue about South and North Korea. It's about destabilizing the whole world. And even if there's a sort of a charm offensive from North Korea here, it's important to not let that overshadow the fact that we need to have strong policies on pushing North Korea out of getting nuclear weapons.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: The prime minister also told Paula she believes the Olympics is a way to promote peace.

The #TimesUp campaign has been a driving force at Hollywood's awards shows this year and it looks like the BAFTAs will do the same.

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards is Sunday in London. Celebrities there plan to show solidarity with their counterparts at the Golden Globes and black out the red carpet to stand against gender inequality and sexual harassment. Our Isa Soares sat down with BAFTA's CEO, Amanda Berry.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BERRY: This all started when the news started coming out about Harvey Weinstein and the industry looked at that and thought, we have to make sure this can never, ever happen again.

I mean, personally, what shocked me most was the fact that people didn't feel they had a voice. They didn't know who they could go to, who would listen.

So industry organizations, close to 40 of them, have come together to put together a cross industry initiative, which is guidance and principles. The idea behind it is to prevent things going wrong in the workplace so, you know, people should know, you know, to treat people with respect.

It's all about recognizing differences but, if something does go wrong, that they know who to talk to.

ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Do you think these guidelines, these principles, would they have stopped the likes of Harvey Weinstein?

BERRY: I think they would have given somebody a voice. As I said earlier, that was the thing that really struck me, when this happened, firstly, that people didn't know it was happening. But secondly, that people didn't feel they had somebody to go, to talk to, to give them advice, to believe them. I want to make sure that that can never, ever happen again.

SOARES: When this did happen, it's almost snowballed, we saw the #MeToo, the #TimesUp campaign, what has been the reaction within your industry in terms of how the momentum has grown behind the #MeToo and the #TimesUp campaign?

[04:55:00]

BERRY: If you look at the wearing black at the Golden Globes, that went from being a rumor, it might happen, to happening in just a matter of weeks.

And I think what is fantastic about what is happening now is people are absolutely determined that they're going to stamp out against harassment and bullying and, should it happen, that they're going to support people to ensure that it can't happen again.

SOARES: You mentioned wearing black at the Golden Globes.

Will BAFTA be doing the same?

BERRY: I expect a lot of people to wear black -- not everybody. But I think a number of the nominees and the presenters will wear black.

SOARES: Let's talk about the movies, quite a selection, quite -- very varied movies that we have in nominations this year.

How would you describe them?

BERRY: It's a fascinating mix; you're absolutely right. We have coming of age stories, we have historical stories. It's a great year for British filmmakers, I've got to say, with three of the films in Best Film category are British directors.

We have, you know, "Dunkirk," directed by Christopher Nolan; "Darkest Hour," which has nine nominations. We have that very British sounding film, "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri." So the talent this year is extraordinary.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ALLEN: The BAFTAs coming up this weekend.

Thanks for watching this hour. Coming up here, though, we return to our breaking news out of Iran. A plane has reportedly crashed with 66 people on board. Details are still unclear. But stay with CNN as we continue to work our sources. We'll have the latest at the top of the hour. Please stay with us.